Molly Shannon has never failed to make us laugh with her dramatic, dorky characters (“SUPAHSTAHHH”), but she might just make us cry this time.
Shannon stars in the new film, Other People, from writer/director Chris Kelly, another SNL writing alum. Also starring Jesse Plemons (Breaking Bad, Fargo), Other People focuses on Plemons’ character, David, a struggling comedy writer who moves back home to care for his cancer-diagnosed mother, Joanne (Shannon), as her condition worsens.
While the film is classified as drama, and Chris Kelly even told Indiewire, “That last 20 minutes, there are no jokes there, folks,” the trailer lets on that there are plenty of laughs to be had. It opens on Joanne discussing her body-disposal options with her son at her side, insisting that she won’t be cremated and asking if her body could be frozen. It rolls into scene bits showing her character’s lighthearted attitude through illness, getting high on medical marijuana and giving her husband dating guidelines for after she’s gone. It also teases its most poignant moments, with Joanne responding to David’s wish that she could travel the whole world by saying, “I get to see my whole world at dinner tonight. All I ever wanted was to be a mom.”
The film premiered at Sundance earlier this year to high praise from critics and even a suggestion that Shannon could be an Oscar contender for her role. She wouldn’t be the first SNL-er to receive the honor, with Dan Akroyd and Bill Murray among the few who have scored acting nominations. Plemons shouldn’t be lost in her buzz, though. The film secures him as one to watch, especially after the lasting impressions he’s made in both Breaking Bad and more recently, the second season of Fargo.
Other People, which also stars Maude Apatow, Bradley Whitford and Zach Woods, will be in theaters everywhere on Sept. 9. Watch the newly released trailer above.